LinuxWorld to Showcase Enterprise Advances

From keynote speakers to product announcements to conference sessions, all aspects of the show point to a growing penetration of Linux in the corporate market.

As the Linux faithful gather in New York for this weeks annual LinuxWorld 2003 conference and expo, a range of software and hardware developers will use the show to showcase new and upgraded offerings—many of which are targeted at the enterprise.

The lineup of keynote speakers also indicates the growing penetration of Linux in the corporate market, with presentations from industry heavyweights AMD President and CEO Hector Ruiz; Randy Mott, CIO of Dell Computer Corp.; Steven Mills, IBMs senior vice president; Michael Tiemann, Red Hat Inc.s chief technology officer; and Jeffrey Birnbaum, managing director and global head of enterprise computing for Morgan Stanleys Institutional Securities division.

A number of conference sessions are also geared toward specific industries such as financial services, telecommunications, government and defense, and several sessions are planned where enterprise customers will detail what theyve done with Linux and how it has benefited them.

Among the product announcements to be made at the show later this week will be the news that VA Software Corp. has integrated its SourceForge Enterprise Edition—which provides a unified development environment for managing code, content and processes—with a broad range of IBM software products. SourceForge now integrates with IBM DB2, WebSphere Studio Application Developer and Tivoli management software. It is now also optimized to run on IBM eServer xSeries Linux servers.

BMC Software Inc. will announce enhancements to several products that help manage Linux platforms. Its Mainview for Linux Servers 1.2—a monitoring and management package for the Linux platform—now provides historical performance and system status information. It will also now support Red Hat Linux as well as SuSE Linux.

BMCs Patrol for Oracle 8.4.5, which increases availability and improves Linux performance, will now give those customers using Linux on IBMs zSeries platform or Oracle proactive monitoring and management capabilities. The product will be available in June and will monitor the Oracle database and alert users to impending problems before outages occur. More than 190 different Oracle parameters will be monitored, and historical reports will be available to enable users to view production trends and set the appropriate alerts and alarms for specific installations.

Opsware Inc., formerly Loudcloud Inc., a provider of data center automation software, is bringing its automation software to Linux systems. The Opsware automation software will manage a broad set of Red Hat Linux distributions as well as Red Hat products designed specifically for the enterprise—like Red Hat Linux Advanced Server 2.1. In addition to managing Linux servers, the Opsware System itself can run on Linux servers.

Enterprises can use Opsware to automate key operations and applications hosted on Linux servers, including provisioning the Linux operating system, provisioning the application infrastructure running on Linux, configuring applications, deploying patches and software updates, and deploying multitier applications. Opsware also automates operations for other platforms, including Sun Solaris, IBM AIX, HP-UX and Windows.

JBoss Group LLC, meanwhile, will announce a free self-serve port to enable the rapid migration of applications running on BEA WebLogic to its fully J2EE (Java 2 Enterprise Edition) 1.3-based server JBoss 3.0. Marc Fleury, the founder of and president of JBoss Group, said the free port includes the porting tool and documentation.

The port will allow organizations to obtain equal or better performance, security and developer productivity on the open-source JBoss server without the licensing constraints and financial costs inherent to WebLogic, he said.

As first reported in eWEEK, managing Linux-based systems is also becoming a top priority for corporate customers. Red Hat Inc., Ximian Inc. and IBM are all planning to make system management announcements this week.

Red Hat will also use the show to focus on the successes it has had in the financial services community. One of its customers, Morgan Stanley, will discuss how it has built an entire open-source mission-critical architecture, which allows it to easily integrate any new application, officials said. Morgan Stanley is now working to move its existing applications to this architecture, which initially started off as a highly replicated Intel environment some two years ago, officials said.

For its part, SuSE will release its new office desktop offering, the SuSE Linux Office Desktop. This is the first time the product, which is based on the current SuSE Linux 8.1, will be publicly available. It will be priced at $129 and should hit retail stores the first week of February.

The new product also includes the CrossOver Office software from CodeWeavers Inc., which lets applications such as Microsoft Office 97 and 2000 and IBMs Lotus Software divisions Notes run. Sun Microsystems StarOffice 6.0 desktop productivity suite will also be included, sources told eWEEK.